With Pelicans’ Anthony Davis in town, Clippers put on their own show in 120-100 victory

first_imgThe Clippers shot 55.1 percent from the field, 53.1 percent from 3-point range on 17-of-32 shooting from there. New Orleans shot 47.5 percent, 34.8 (8 of 23) from 3-point range.Although Clippers coach Doc Rivers said the work on Davis was at times collective, Griffin was the man assigned to him and he did a terrific job.“Blake was great defensively,” Rivers said.Davis praised the Clippers’ overall effort.“They just tried to play physical and play hard,” he said. “They made a ton of shots and 17 (3-pointers), and we can’t really do anything about that. We fought back, and then the third quarter happened, but we continued to fight.”The Clippers led 34-18 after one quarter and by as many as 18 points early in the second. But the Pelicans had tied the game 54-54 by halftime. That apparently was a sore point with the starters, who built that lead only to see the second unit lose it.“That’s the most upset I’ve seen our team at halftime,” Rivers said. “That was great. I loved that. They were (angry), the starters were, because they get out to a big lead and it slips away. And I think the lesson for our second unit, make your own game. Don’t come in … the first unit got it and then they came in and it felt like they thought, ‘Well, let’s just join in.’ Well, you’ve gotta earn that and I don’t think our guys did that.”Griffin admitted his team losing that 18-point lead was unsettling.“I think we were just frustrated that we gave up the lead in the second quarter,” he said. “We put our minds to it and everyone came out firing. It was a beautiful thing.”The Clippers outscored the Pelicans 39-24 in the third quarter to lead 93-78 entering the fourth.Paul talked about the halftime vibe.“It was just healthy conversation,” he said. “The lead that we had early in the game, and to let the team back in it, was tough. We kept saying in the huddle, ‘They’re not going to give up.’“New Orleans (8-10) has lost five of six. Contributing to the Pelicans’ cause, Ryan Anderson scored 16 points off the bench, Tyreke Evans scored 13 and Luke Babbitt had 12 points.Austin Rivers, son of Doc Rivers, had eight points, six rebounds and six assists off the bench.One thing is certain. Griffin won the battle of power forwards. But Davis didn’t really want to look at it that way.“I just go out there and play,” he said. “I don’t worry about who is guarding me or who is guarding who. I try to worry about the team and what I can do offensively and defensively to help the team win.“It’s not me versus Blake, or me versus whoever. It’s the Pelicans versus whatever team we are going to play.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error “I love challenges like that,” Griffin said. “He’s obviously one of the best players – not just power forwards – in the league. I love a challenge like that and to go against a guy like that is fun. But ultimately, you can’t get too caught up in a matchup like that.“You have to stay focused on making sure you’re doing your job.”SEE BOX SCORE | INSIDE THE CLIPPERS BLOGGriffin did his job, all right. He led the Clippers with 30 points on 10-of-15 shooting, and he eclipsed the 7,000-point mark in his career. Redick scored 21 points, Jamal Crawford had 20 and Chris Paul scored 18 points and doled out 16 assists. DeAndre Jordan contributed eight points, 18 rebounds and five blocks, and Matt Barnes scored 14 points.center_img As well as the Los Angeles Clippers have been playing of late, they were not the only big basketball story in town Saturday night. Sharing the spotlight was 21-year-old superstar Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans, who took on the Clippers at Staples Center. He is the talk of the league in his third season. “He’s not playing like a third-year pro. He’s playing like an established superstar. He knows how good he is,” Clippers guard J.J. Redick said at the morning shootaround.Davis came in averaging 25.2 points (third in the NBA), 3.06 blocks (first), 2.29 steals (first) and 11.5 rebounds (sixth). He was not quite that good on this night, and the Clippers capitalized by defeating the Pelicans 120-100 before a sellout crowd of 19,060 at Staples Center.Davis scored 26 points on 9-of-15 shooting. But 10 of those came in the fourth quarter and by then the Clippers were in control. Davis had just three rebounds, one block and no steals. Thanks to Blake Griffin, who guarded him, Davis had to work hard to get his shot.last_img

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